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The Korean daily media headlines and humor

The Korean daily media headlines and humor

Monday, October 30, 2017

Your Excellency:

Here are The Korea Post notices and a roundup of important headlines from all major Korean-language dailies, TV and other news media of Korea today:

Very Respectfully Yours

/s/

Lee Kyung-sik

Publisher-Chairman

Korea Post Media

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The 13rd Cheongsong Apple Festival on Friday Nov. 3, 2017.

There are many interesting events and sights offered by the Host that day.

See The Korea Post article and photos at http://www.koreapost.com/news/articleView.html?idxno=4097

The tour is organized for the Ambassadors, Senior Diplomats and Madams by The Korea Post media at the invitation of Mayor Han Dong-su and the chairman of the Organizing Committee of the Festival.

Cheongsong has won the Slow City Award for the three consecutive years, is a UNESCO Geological Park, is widely known for a Slow City in Korea and its Apple has won the TOP AWARD in quality and taste for the five consecutive years.

Mayor Han is providing each visiting Diplomat that day with a box of Top Quality Cheongsong Apples for the purpose of personal sampling and introduction to all the countries of the world through actual sampling by the Excellency and Madam as well as their own country.

The itinerary of the Tour follows:

0900 hours Friday November 3, 2017: Meet at Grand Hyatt Seoul

0905-1150 hours: Depart for Cheongsong by a Limousine bus.

1150-1200 hours: Meet and exchange of pleasantries and greetings with Mayor Han Dong-su of Cheongsong.

1200-1300 hours: Luncheon with Mayor and Mrs. Han and other leaders of the County.

1330-1420 hours: Tour the Songso Ancient House of the Joseon Dynasty.

1420-1430 hours: Move to the Festival venue.

1430-1630 hours: Tour 2017 Cheongsong Apple Festival Venue.

1630-1800 hours: Tour the famed Juwangsan National Park.

1800-2050 hours: Move back to the Grand Hyatt Seoul from Cheongsong.

For inquiries, please call Publisher-Chairman Lee Kyung-sik (010-5201-1740) or Ms. Kim Su-a (010-7584-5873) for inquiries in English or Ms. Kim Jung-mi (010-3388-1692), Hwi Won (010-5376-1225), or John Kim for Korean information.

Sincerely Yours

/s/

Lee Kyung-sik

Publisher-Chairman

The Korea Post media

010-5201-1740

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What’s ticking in Korea today? Here is a quick roundup of important news stories from the major Korean news media today:


The Korea Post media (www.koreapost.com) in English, (www.koreapost.co.kr) in Korean.

PyeongChang 2018 chief optimistic about Paralympics ticket sales

The chief of the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Games said Sunday he is optimistic about the Paralympics ticket sales as more people will purchase tickets during the multisport event for the disabled athletes. Lee Hee-beom, who leads the PyeongChang Organizing Committee for the 2018 Olympic & Paralympic Winter Games (POCOG), said he is positive that the Paralympics ticket sales will surge once the event begins."When the International Paralympic Committee President (Andrew Parsons) visited PyeongChang earlier this month, he told us not to be too concerned about the ticket sales," Lee told South Korean reporters on a flight to Athens, where the organizers will receive the Olympic flame Tuesday. "He said many people purchase tickets when the event actually starts, so we're not too concerned about it at this moment."

Number of foreign visitors to S. Korea falls 23.5 pct

The number of foreigners visiting South Korea declined 23.5 percent to 9.94 million in the January-September period compared to a year earlier, a report by the central bank showed Sunday.Visits by Chinese nationals plunged over 60 percent on-year, as China restricted tour programs amid a diplomatic row over the deployment of a US. missile defense system in the country, according to the Bank of Korea. In March, Beijing imposed a ban on tour packages to South Korea, which was lifted only recently. Foreign tourists spent US$8.8 billion over the January-August period, down 23.6 percent from the previous year.

Sales of packaged kimchi expected to grow 9.6 pct in 2017

Sales of packaged kimchi are expected to grow 9.6 percent in 2017 from a year earlier, on rising demand from single-member households, industry data showed Sunday. According to Daesang Co., a major ready-made kimchi producer, the domestic market for the product is expected to reach 1.39 trillion won (US$1.22 billion) this year from 1.27 trillion won posted in 2016. The demand for kimchi for home use, especially, is expected to jump 25 percent on-year to reach 366.3 billion won, the data showed.Daesang said that while the consumption of kimchi per capita is declining as Koreans' eating habits are becoming westernized, the rising number of single or two-person households has led to increased shipping of packaged kimchi.

Air passenger traffic in S. Korea rises 4.7 pct in September

Air passenger traffic in South Korea rose in September as a rise in demand for routes to Japan, Southeast Asia and Europe offset the steep fall in Chinese travelers, government data showed Sunday. A total of 9.02 million passengers used international and domestic flights last month, up 4.7 percent from a year ago, the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transportation said. The number of passengers using international flights climbed 3.7 percent to 6.22 million despite the plunge in Chinese travelers, as airlines expanded alternative routes and stepped up marketing for Europe tour packages, the ministry said. Air travelers to Japan and Europe gained slightly over 20 percent, and those to Southeast Asian nations advanced a solid 16.7 percent. In contrast, passengers heading to China plunged 31.1 percent in September to mark a seventh consecutive monthly loss.

U.S. senator slams Trump again over N.K. policy

A U.S. Republican senator called out President Donald Trump again on Sunday, saying the commander-in-chief is hampering diplomatic efforts to resolve the nuclear crisis with North Korea. Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN), who has recently been involved in a personal feud with Trump, reiterated his argument as the president prepares for his first official visit to Asia later this week."When our secretary of state is sitting down with a partner that matters most -- China -- trying to negotiate something that would resolve and keep us from going into military conflict with North Korea, which brings in South Korea, Japan, China, and Russia, and he's knee-capped by the president, it hurts our nation. It hurts our efforts," the senator told CBS.

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KBS (http://world.kbs.co.kr/english/news/)

Prosecutor Grilled over NIS Election Meddling Scandal

A senior prosecutor was questioned Sunday for allegedly obstructing an investigation into the National Intelligence Service's(NIS) illegal meddling in the 2012 presidential election. Former chief of the Busan District Prosecutors' Office Chang Ho-joong is suspected of obstructing the prosecution's investigation into the NIS's election meddling scandal in 2013 when he served as chief of the spy agency's inspection bureau. Chang allegedly made a fake office of the NIS' psychological warfare squad to avoid a prosecution’s raid of the squad's real office, and had members of the squad lie about their activities of writing Internet comments to sway public opinion during the 2012 presidential election.

Kim Jong-un Visits Cosmetics Factory in Pyongyang

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has visited a recently renovated cosmetics factory in Pyongyang. The North's state media Korean Central News Agency(KCNA) reported Sunday that Kim praised the company and called for the production of cosmetics of good quality that can compete with global cosmetics producers during his field guidance at the Pyongyang Cosmetics Factory. The report said that Kim was very pleased about the factory, praising the variety and quality of cosmetics as well as the pattern of their containers and packaging. Kim reportedly made the visit along with senior party members, his wife Ri Sol-ju and his sister Kim Yo-jong.

'S. Korea, US Will Never Tolerate N. Korea's Provocations'

The defense chiefs of South Korea and the United States have warned that North Korea's provocations will never be tolerated, saying that any act of aggression will be met with a "massive military response." South Korea's Defense Minister Song Young-moo and his U.S. counterpart James Mattis issued the warning on Saturday in a joint news conference held after the bilateral Security Consultative Meeting in Seoul. Mattis said that any use of nuclear weapons by the North will be met with a massive military response that is both effective and overwhelming. The U.S. defense chief also reaffirmed his country’s commitment in providing an extended deterrence for South Korea using the full range of military capabilities, including a nuclear umbrella, conventional strikes and missile defense capabilities.

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Yonhap (http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr)

UN General Assembly's 1st Committee adopts 3 resolutions against N.K.'s nuclear test: VOA

The First Committee of the United Nations General Assembly has adopted three resolutions that denounce North Korea's nuclear test, a U.S.-based media report said Saturday. Mohammed Hussein Bahr Aluloom of Iraq, who leads the UN committee that discusses all topics related to disarmament and international security, announced on Thursday that draft resolution L35, "United action with renewed determination toward the total elimination of nuclear weapons," was adopted after it was endorsed by 144 countries, with four objections and 27 abstentions, according to Voice of America (VOA). The anti-nuclear resolution from Japan, which is also co-sponsored by the United States and Britain, calls for the total elimination of nuclear weapons, but VOA said it virtually targets North Korea that conducted its sixth nuclear test last month.

N. Korean leader visits cosmetics factory in Pyongyang: KCNA

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has visited a recently renovated cosmetics factory in Pyongyang, the North's state media reported Sunday.He called for the production of "cosmetics of good quality with world competitive power during his field guidance at the Pyongyang Cosmetics Factory, the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said. Accompanied by his wife Ri Sol-ju, he inspected the plant's modernization process and research activities, as well as the production and quality of its beauty products. "He was very pleased, saying the variety of cosmetics produced by the factory are numerous and qualitative, and that not only pattern of their vessels but packing boxes are very nice," the KCNA reported.

U.S. senator slams Trump again over N.K. policy

A U.S. Republican senator called out President Donald Trump again on Sunday, saying the commander-in-chief is hampering diplomatic efforts to resolve the nuclear crisis with North Korea. Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN), who has recently been involved in a personal feud with Trump, reiterated his argument as the president prepares for his first official visit to Asia later this week."When our secretary of state is sitting down with a partner that matters most -- China -- trying to negotiate something that would resolve and keep us from going into military conflict with North Korea, which brings in South Korea, Japan, China, and Russia, and he's knee-capped by the president, it hurts our nation. It hurts our efforts," the senator told CBS.

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The Korea Herald (http://www.koreaherald.com)

After defense chiefs' talks, timing of OPCON transfer draws fresh attention

The timing of South Korea's resumption of wartime operational control from the United States has gained fresh attention due to a subtle change in the wording of their annual defense ministers' joint statement released Saturday.
At the close of the Security Consultative Meeting, Defense Minister Song Young-moo and his US counterpart James Mattis issued a statement that affirmed their leaders' decision in June to enable an "expeditious" OPCON transfer.

Samsung hosts insider expo for growth with ‘disruptive technologies’

South Korean tech titan Samsung is fiercely seeking innovative growth in the absence of its de facto leader by holding a closed-door exhibition this week, according to sources on Sunday. At Samsung’s corporate campus in Giheung, Gyeonggi Province, the company is holding a three-day tech exhibition -- the Samsung Tech Fair -- from Monday through Wednesday, organized by Samsung Advanced Institute of Technology, according to sources. The annual fair is held every fall to provide executives and employees of Samsung affiliates with ideas of new technologies Samsung is planning to develop both with mid- and long-term plans.

‘Candle Revolution not yet complete’

Marking one year from the start of the peaceful grassroots movement that led to the ouster of embattled President Park Geun-hye, South Koreans on Saturday brought out their candles once again. With memories of the past winter’s movement still vivid, they celebrated how they turned the country upside-down with candles. Park and her clique are behind bars, a new reform-minded president is in office and some of the country’s most powerful state organs -- the police, prosecution and spy agency -- are weathering a perfect storm of reform. Amid the festivities, participants in the anniversary event said the “Candle Revolution” is not complete yet. They called for a wide range of political, social and economic reforms to eradicate the “deep-rooted evil” in the society.

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The Korea Times (http://www.koreatimes.co.kr)

'Trump not afraid of chaos'

Former United States Vice President Dan Quayle says it is important for South Korea to understand that U.S. President Donald Trump "does not mind chaos and thinks it is his friend." The remark, made by a man close with incumbent U.S. Vice President Mike Pence, has extra significance given that Trump is expected to deliver messages regarding North Korea during his two-day state visit to the South on Nov. 7. In a recent interview with The Korea Times, Quayle, who is chairman of global investment firm Cerberus Capital Management, said Trump was "very different" from other U.S. presidents.

Sexual misconduct a problem at military academies

Sexual misconduct by cadets is an ongoing problem at Korean military academies, according to a report. Rep. Kim Hack-yong from the main opposition Liberty Korea Party said on Sunday there were four cases of sexual misconduct by cadets from Jan. to Sept. 2017, according to the report. The report was submitted by the Korean Military Academy, Korean Naval Academy and Air Force Academy (AFA), Korea Armed Forces Nursing Academy and Korea Army Academy at Yeong-cheon (KAAY).

Contributions to global organizations poorly managed: lawmaker

South Korea needs to create a body that coordinates contributions and donations to international organizations, Rep. Kim Kyung-hyup of the ruling Democratic Party of Korea said Sunday. Rep. Kim said there were overlapping and excessive contributions by government agencies to the United Nations and other international organizations because there was no body in charge of planning and coordinating overall strategy. For example, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) gave about 2.1 billion won ($1.85 million) to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) this year for the "peaceful transition of atomic power. " The Ministry of Science and ICT handed over 300 million won, also to the IAEA, for the "peaceful use of atomic power" the same year.

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DongA Ilbo (http://english.donga.com)

Pictures of Xi and Mao hung together in his old home

Taking a step into a cave home where Chinese President Xi Jinping lived at the age of 15, the portrait of Mao Zedong and a propaganda poster saying “Let’s march forward under the banner of Mao Zedong!” hung up on the wall came into view behind a blanket and oil lamp. Xi was sent to Liangjiahe Village, Yanchuan County, Shaanxi Province in 1969 to work as a farmer as part of the “Down to the Countryside Movement.”A step further into a little space less than 10 square meters, this reporter was greeted with the framed black and white photograph of President Xi in his youth. One meter away from his picture, the picture of Mao Zedong with a phrase “Long live Mao Zedong!” was posted on the wall.

Pentagon poised to make stronger armed protests towards N. Korea

The United States is likely to step up its pressure on Pyongyang as U.S. Secretary of Defense James Mattis and his South Korean counterpart Song Young-moo have agreed to expand the rotational deployment of U.S. strategic assets at the 49th Security Consultative Meeting at the Defense Ministry in Yongsan, Seoul on Saturday, which was held for the first time since the new administrations took office in both countries.

Chinese budget carriers to resume S. Korea-bound routes

Amidst signs of alleviated tensions between Seoul and Beijing over the THAAD deployment, Chinese airlines have started to resume their South Korea-bound routes, which have been suspended since March. Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi and Korea’s Ambassador to China Noh Young-min met in Beijing on Sunday for the first time and shared expectations over the development of South Korea-China relationship.China’s budget carrier Spring Airlines Co., which suspended its Ningbo-Jeju Island routes from July due to a decrease in the number of passengers, has notified through its homepage that it plans to resume its flight service, connecting Ningbo and Jeju Island, three times a week starting from Tuesday. The airline company applied for an MOU to the competent authority of both countries and received approval. It has been identified that Spring Airlines is carefully looking through expanding its Shanghai-Jeju Island routes, which are continuing to be in service.

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Chosun Ilbo (http://english.chosun.com)

Are You Depressed? Check Yourself for Warning Signs
A growing number of people are struggling with depression, as seen in recent news stories of suicide and even attempted murders.As part of efforts to tackle this problem, the Ministry of Health and Welfare and the Korea Health Promotion Foundation recently released a checklist to help people self-evaluate whether they're suffering from depression or anxiety.The most common symptoms include feeling low or listless, and lacking interest in or being unable to enjoy most activities for two weeks or more.

Koreans Hold 3rd 'Most Powerful' Passport in the World
Koreans hold the third most welcome passport in the world, going by a handy index from an investment firm. The Passport Index updated by Arton Capital on Wednesday estimated that Singapore has the "most powerful" passport out of 199 countries with the highest visa-free score of 159.This is the first time an Asian country has taken the top spot on the index. The firm ranks passports on the basis of the number of countries they can visit visa-free or with visa on arrival.

Korea's Economic Growth Hits 7-Year High
Korea's economy grew at the fastest clip in more than seven years in the third quarter of this year at 1.4 percent thanks to strong exports aided by pump-priming measures.The figures have prompted economists to project three-percent growth for the whole year and predict that the Bank of Korea will raise the key interest rate before the end of the year.The central bank on Thursday said third-quarter GDP stood at W392.7 trillion, up 1.4 percent from the previous quarter. That was the highest growth since the second quarter of 2010.

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HanKyoReh Shinmun (http://english.hani.co.kr)

US-China-Russia relations discussed at Hankyoreh-Busan International Symposium

US President Donald Trump was elected under the slogan of “Make America Great Again.” It was only natural that the Trump administration’s foreign policy approach would be centered on bilateral relations and grounded in a distrust of multilateralism, a new isolationism and the vision of “America first.” The new trilateral alignment between the US, China and Russia that has taken shape starting with the US-China summit in April and continuing with the One Belt, One Road Summit in May, the G20 Summit in July and the BRICS Summit and Eastern Economic Forum in September, is producing a geopolitical counterpoint between competition and cooperation, between checks and balances. How have the changes in the dynamics in Eurasia since Trump’s inauguration affected the Moon Jae-in administration’s plan to resolve the North Korean nuclear issue and to bring about its policy of “new northern cooperation”? These were the issues that were discussed in-depth by experts from South Korea and other countries during the first session on the second day of the 13th Hankyoreh-Busan International Symposium, which was held at Nurimaru APEC House in Busan on the morning of Oct. 27, moderated by Moon Heung-ho, a professor at Hanyang University.

Panelists discuss South Korea’s challenges in balancing US-China-Russia relations

A coordinated approach between China, Russia, and the US to solving the North Korean nuclear crisis is probably wishful thinking, according to a group of experts who presented on the second day of the Hankyoreh-Busan International Symposium held at the Nurimaru APEC center on Oct. 27. Much more likely is that the divisions between China and Russia on one side, and the US and Japan on the other, will continue to deepen, putting the Moon Jae-in administration in a difficult spot. “When elephants fight, the grass gets trampled,” said Kim Jae-kwan, a professor of politics and international relations at Chonnam National University. The key, he said, was finding a way for the South Korean government to create leverage to use against both sides, although he did not offer any specific ideas for how this could be achieved.

US-South Korea alliance hindering efforts to find an exit strategy to NK nuclear crisis

South Korean President Moon Jae-in took office in a situation where the US, China and Russia’s geopolitical rivalry over the Korean Peninsula was intensifying amid the growing severity of the North Korean nuclear crisis. Soon after Moon’s inauguration, there was a series of nuclear and missile provocations by North Korea and harsh responses by the Trump administration, which escalated tensions on the Korean Peninsula and limited the new Moon administration’s options in regard to foreign policy.Such were the concerns of experts who declared that efforts to find an exit strategy are being hampered by the South Korea-US alliance during the afternoon session on the second day (Oct. 27) of the 13th Hankyoreh-Busan International Symposium (held at Nurimaru APEC House in Busan), which was organized on the theme of, “An assessment of the Moon administration’s three-power diplomacy and inter-Korean relations.”

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JoongAng Ilbo (http://koreajoongangdaily.joins.com/)

Wartime control transfer hits snag

The Moon Jae-in administration’s ambition to regain wartime operational control from the United States has hit a snag, as the latest security consultation by U.S. and Korean defense chiefs failed to approve a restructuring plan for the combined forces. Defense Minister Song Young-moo and U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis attended an annual Security Consultative Meeting on Saturday in Seoul, accompanied by top military officials. North Korea’s nuclear and missile threats, and other key issues concerning the Korea-U.S. alliance, were discussed. Following the discussion, the 49th of its kind, a joint communique was issued. Song and Mattis also addressed reporters in a press conference. According to the joint communique, Song and Mattis pledged to work together to implement an agreement made in June by Moon and U.S. President Donald Trump to “enable the expeditious conditions-based transfer of wartime operational control.”

Anniversary rally draws crowd of 60,000 people

Tens of thousands of people gathered in Gwanghwamun Square, central Seoul, Saturday to mark the first anniversary of the candlelight vigils that led to former President Park Geun-hye’s removal from office, as her successor, President Moon Jae-in, highlighted the occasion by vowing to eradicate “deep-rooted social evils.” The rally in Gwanghwamun saw nearly 60,000 people gather, according to the organizing group, which led the anti-Park demonstrations for 23 consecutive weeks at the same venue since Oct. 29, 2016. A number of picket signs were visible in the crowd, including those urging the arrest of former conservative President Lee Myung-bak, Park’s predecessor, the reformation of the National Intelligence Service, granting voting rights to teenagers and the establishment of a second special committee to investigate the 2014 Sewol tragedy.

As coding education nears, a call for creativity

As computer programming is set to become a part of school curricula across the nation starting next year, industry insiders and experts are calling for a system that emphasizes creative thinking more than rote learning.“Programming is often considered similar to mathematics but math education in Korea puts more weight on how to solve a given problem as quickly as possible without making mistakes rather than learning to think logically based on the fundamental principles of the subject,” said Ha Jae-seung, a software engineer and senior researcher at Nexon, Korea’s leading online game publisher at a press conference for the Nexon Youth Programming Challenge. The annual coding competition for elementary, middle and high school students in Korea took place at the company’s headquarters in Pangyo, Gyeonggi on Saturday.

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The KyungHyang Shinmun (http://english.khan.co.kr/)

"0" Outside Visitors: Park Geun-hye Chooses Life in Seclusion
Former President Park Geun-hye (65) has not received a single outside visitor, including family, friends and acquaintances, except for her lawyers for over six months since she was arrested at the end of March. This is in contrast to her former Chief of Staff Kim Ki-choon (78), Choi Soon-sil (61) and Lee Jae-yong (49), vice chairman of Samsung Electronics, who have continued their contact with the outside world even after their arrest for their involvement in the abuse of state authority.According to the "Status of Visitations of the Former President" (as of October 16, 2017), which the office of the Minjoo Party of Korea lawmaker Lee Choon-suak received from the Justice Ministry on October 26, former President Park has met with zero outside visitors since she was arrested on March 31. Visitations by outsiders are divided into general interviews (general visits) and other location interviews (special visits). The general visits are conducted within the detention center facilities, with a transparent acrylic wall between the prisoner and the visitor. Inmates who have yet to have their sentence finalized are allowed one ten-minute general visit a day. As for special visits, inmates can meet the visitor for 20-30 minutes without any obstacle or barrier between them in a separate room.

Hong Joon-pyo, "U.S Officials Reluctant to Answer Demand for Redeployment of Tactical Nuclear Weapons"
Liberty Korea Party leader Hong Joon-pyo (Jun-pyo), currently visiting the United States, announced the results of a meeting with U.S. government figures and experts on October 25 (local time), and said, "I think that the North Korean nuclear issue has reached its final peak, and that a U.S. response is not far away." Hong, who went to the U.S. to deliver the views in South Korea that want tactical nuclear weapons redeployed on the Korean Peninsula, shared his thoughts at a meeting with South Korean correspondents in Washington D.C. this day.He avoided any specific mention of the "U.S. response," and simply said, "It was difficult to predict."

What We Have Accomplished and What Still Needs to Be Done
If there are long periods when a firm order continues in the history of a society, there are also turbulent moments when the desire for change conceived by that order erupts. Last fall and winter, when millions of citizens joined the candlelight rallies, was that moment. The battle between the regressive power, which resists such change, and the advancing power, which seeks to complete the change, continues. The group with the historical self-consciousness on what that change has achieved will have the power to define the future.

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The Korea Economic Daily (http://english.hankyung.com/)

POSCO Completes Steel Wire Service Center in the U.S.

POSCO, Korea's largest steel maker, has completed on September 22 the construction of a steel wire service center in Jeffersonville, Indiana, with an annual capacity of 25,000 tons. The plant will supply steel wire goods to be used for bolts, nuts, and bearings to auto parts companies.Started in April last year, the service center cost the company US$20.9 million to build. The high-quality steel materials produced in the new plant will be supplied to companies like Simplex Korea, Taeyang Metal Industrial, Nissan, and Fontana.

Industry Panics over Prospect of Rising Subcontract Worker Disputes

As the government pronounced illegal on the practice of companies relying on subcontract workers for a long time such as the cases in Paris Baguette and Mando-Hella, the whole industry in shock. This is not just restricted to manufacturers but is spread to services and the food franchise industry as well. The corporate sector expected on September 24 that companies like Tous Les Jours, Samsung Electronics service centers, and LG U+ will likely face the same problem any time soon after the Ministry of Employment and Labor made a decision on dispatch workers. An official with a large corporation said that he is worried that the government may pressure his company to hire all dispatch workers as full-time regular employees.

Oil Refiners See Good Times ahead due to Rising Oil Prices

International oil prices have hit a record high in seven months as they went up over US$50 a barrel. The domestic oil refining sector raised its hopes of improving their profitability in the third quarter after suffering poor results for two consecutive quarters. The spot price for Dubai crude as compiled by the Korea National Oil Corp. was $53.64 a barrel on September 16, up by 7 cents from the previous day. This is the highest level since February this year when the figure was $54.39.

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AJU Business Daily (http://eng.ajunews.com/korea)

U.S. and S. Korean defense chiefs issue strong warning in front of N. Korean soldiers

Watched by North Korean border guards at a close range, U.S. and South Korean defense chiefs inspected the scene of tense confrontation across the world's last Cold War frontier, demonstrating their strong will to fight back against Pyongyang's nuclear and missile threats. U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis, escorted by South Korean Defense Minister Song Young-moo, walked into a joint security area in the truce village of Panmunjom in the middle of the demilitarized zone (DMZ) which bisects the Korean peninsula. Mattis stood together with Song near an imaginary demarcation line and accused North Korea of jeopardizing regional and global security with a series of provocations. "As Secretary of State Tillerson has made clear, our goal is not war but rather the complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula," the secretary said in a statement.

Pyongyang belatedly admits seizure of S. Korean fishing boat

North Korea belatedly acknowledged the seizure of a South Korean boat for illegal fishing in its territorial waters six days ago at the height of cross-border tensions ran over a major sea exercise by South Korean and U.S. warships led by an American aircraft carrier strike group.The boat, "391 Hungjin", was captured on October 21 after it intruded into North Korean waters off the east coast, according to Pyongyang's official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA). However, Pyongyang decided to repatriate the boat and its crew "from the humanitarian point of view" because they admitted their wrongdoing and repeatedly apologized, asking for "leniency", KCNA said.

Apple's iPhone 8 not as popular as old models in S. Korea

Apple's new smartphone iPhone 8 was finally available in South Korea dominated by excellent home-made smartphones, but fans showed a lukewarm response, breaking their tradition which has been established for years. The traditional popularity of iPhones has been reflected in an annual new-age ritual practiced by South Koreans trying to make pre-orders on online websites every year when Apple released new models. Despite constant server crashes caused by traffic bottlenecks, Apple fans used to endure such inconveniences. However, the mood was different on Thursday when South Korean mobile carriers started receiving pre-orders. The reaction of iPhone fans was not as strong as before, online tech communities were quiet, and no crashed online store servers were reported.

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Maeil Business News Korea (http://www.pulsenews.co.kr/)

S. Korean retail and tourism biz get ready for return of Chinese visitors

South Korean retail and tourism industries that have been hit hard from soured relationship with China over Seoul’s deployment of U.S. antimissile defense system are accelerating their efforts to recover business as Beijing-Seoul relations have shown signs of thaw with the beginning of Chinese President Xi Jinping’s second term. Korean retail and tourism sectors that rely heavily on Chinese tourists have seen their sales nosedive after Chinese government in mid-March imposed a travel ban on Chinese tour groups going to Korea as part of an economic retaliation against Seoul’s deployment of U.S. Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) missile defense system.

Apple’s iPhone 8 receives tepid reception in S. Korea

Apple Inc. began receiving pre-orders for its latest iPhone 8 series in South Korea on Friday, but the new series sold out at a slower pace compared to the predecessor iPhone 7 series, underscoring the phone’s tepid reception worldwide.
KT Corp., the country’s No. 2 mobile carrier, said on Friday that all 50,000 units of the iPhone 8 that were allocated for pre-order online and offline sold out in 30 minutes after its pre-order reception began. It was slower than the iPhone 7 series that sold out in 15 minutes when the same amount of pre-order was put up for sale last year.

Samsung likely to announce new senior management team on Oct. 31

Samsung Electronics Co. is expected to name its new senior executives including the successor to Vice Chairman Kwon Oh-hyun, who has been leading the company amid the absence of Samsung Group heir Jay Y. Lee, early next week.
Kwon, who has led Samsung Electronics’ hugely successful semiconductor business had surprised local corporate world with his sudden resignation announcement on Oct. 13. He has been de-facto chief of the South Korean tech giant after Samsung scion Lee, also vice chairman of Samsung Electronics, was arrested earlier this year for bribery and other charges in a massive corruption scandal that removed Korea’s former President Park Geun-hye. Lee was sentenced to five years in prison in August and has appealed denying charges.

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Le Monde www.ilemonde.com

Italy LaRepubblica www.quotidiano.repubblica.it vittorio.zucconi@gmail.com

Germany Frankfurter AllgemeineZeitung www.faz.net anzeigen.ausland@faz.de

SüddeutscheZeitung www.sueddeutsche.de forum@sueddeutsche.de

Australia Brisbane Times www.brisbanetimes.com.au syndication@fairfaxmedia.com.au

Sydney Morning Heraldwww.smh.com.au

Colombia Reports http://colombiareports.com

Bogota Free Planet http://bogotafreeplanet.combfp@bogotafreeplanet.com

El Universal http://www.eluniversal.com.mx/english

Andes http://www.andes.info.ec/en

Ecuador Times http://www.ecuadortimes.net

The Jordan Times https://www.jordantimes.com

LSM.lv http://www.lsm.lv/en

The Baltic Times http://www.baltictimes.comlithuania@baltictimes.com, estonia@baltictimes.com, editor@baltictimes.com

El Pais http://elpais.com/elpais/inenglish.html

Philippine Daily Inquirer https://www.inquirer.net

Daily News Hungary http://dailynewshungary.com

Budapest Times http://budapesttimes.hu

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The Korea Post is running video clips from the different embassies.

Azerbaijan: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OR8CBpcQ4WM

Sri Lanka: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hByX92Y2aGY&t=22s

Morocco: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jfFmp2sVvSE

And many other countries.

Lee Kyung-sik  edt@koreapost.com

<저작권자 © 코리아포스트, 무단 전재 및 재배포 금지>

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